Because we all deserve some extra sunshine in our lives, we curated this box to be filled with fragrances that feel like wearing liquid light – luminescent, mood-lifting, spirit-reviving scents that instantly bring a smile to your face from the first spritz.
To grab one of the few remaining Seasonal Scent Summer Boxes with that amazing 20% saving, simply use this code when prompted on checking out: SUMMER20
Terms & Conditions – Code cannot be used in conjunction with any other code or used on sale products. Active from 15.09.21 12.00pm – 20.09.21 12.00am. Applicable on the Quarterly and Annual subscription, 20% off only applies to Summer Box when purchasing a Quarterly subscription.
Our Seasonal Scent Boxes have proved incredibly popular, and no wonder with the past 18 months or so we’ve all experienced. They’ve been put together to answer the many queries we get, asking which fragrances are best to wear for particular times of year. As summer-ish weather now seems to stretch anywhere from Easter to late September in the U.K. we felt it only right to prolong the pleasure by giving you this last chance to get your hands (and nose!) on these scent-filled boxes of joy!
Seasonal Fragrances – EIGHT fragrances from 2ml – 7ml, these will be kept secret until they arrive at your door, we just love the element of surprise!
Online Smelling Notes – accessible via a QR code within your box, guiding you through the fragrances and how to start smelling.
Unboxing Video – also via the QR code, for every box our Senior Fragrance Writer Suzy Nightingale will guide you when opening your new box.
Hints, Tips and Quizzes – to ensure you get the most out of your fragrances and have fun!
Don’t delay and miss out on your last chance to capture the sunshine! A gift for a friend or family member you’ve not been able to catch up with this summer? A gift to self because you bloomin’ well deserve it, maybe? Whatever the occasion, these radiant fragrances will bring you happy summer memories for months to come…
Last of the Summer Sunshine? Well the last few days the weather’s actually been more ‘summer’ like than it has been for several weeks! As the last days of summer slip into autumn’s more golden light, it can be hard to mark where one season ends and another begins – these fragrances are filled with a glorious luminousity that captures those gilded days and helps us cling to the sunshine a while longer…
GUERLAIN Aqua Allegoria Flora Salvaggia
Who hasn’t fantasised about running through a meadow of wildflowers, wind in our hair? That’s the vibe that Guerlain seek to evoke with this second of 2021’s Aqua Allegoria, composed to conjure up the ‘poetry’ of the scent of wild flora, lifted by a drift of clean musks. We know many a collector of these Guerlain creations, who’ll be thrilled to add this gilded bottle (with its lavender-tinted juice) to their summer scent wardrobe. From £69 for 75ml eau de toilette guerlain.com
HOLLISTER Canyon Escape For Her
Another trend we’re noticing in fragrances this year is a shimmering sunrise of desert-themed scents – the olfactory oasis here blooming with rose, orange blossom and dusty iris, freshened up top with juicy mandarin, blood orange and a ripple of cool cactus, smoothed beneath by cedarwood and a soft waft of musk. We imagine sun-blushed skin, floral crowns and the glamorous yet laid-back escapism of the Californian desert while sniffing this so-happy scent. £16.50 for 100ml eau de parfum very.co.uk
NARCISO RODRIGUEZ Narciso Eau Neroli Ambrée
Neroli is one of the most instantly sunshine-y, happy-making notes on the scentscape (we took an office poll last year, and it came out on top for evoking bright light and happy, holiday memories). The brilliant Aurélien Guichard packs pleasure into every spritz, here – a veritable whoosh of optimism, tempered with comfort, in this slinky, silky dream. Orange blossom and soft woods sigh contentedly to the so-iconic white musk trail. £65 for 50ml eau de parfum johnlewis.com
CALVIN KLEIN Eternity Men Summer
If you couldn’t get away this year, this really feels like a holiday in a bottle. Evoking the unique air temperature of a summer’s dawn, the airy exhilaration of bergamot oil sparkles like the first fingers of sunlight illuminating the sea, the glittering waves bringing coconut water and a smooth, creamy breeze of Australian sandalwood – and you’ll be glad to know this precious ingredient was sustainably sourced. Eternity always feels like a perfect summer’s day, bottled forever. £60 for 100ml eau de toilette superdrug.com
PARFUMS DE MARLY Greenley
A distinctly greener vibe for this much-loved niche house, bringing the feeling of a Cologne but with the benefit of far greater staying power in a concentrated eau de parfum. Bursting with citrus up top, the petitgrain grants an immediate freshness, a fruity interpretation of cashmere wood fused with crisp apple and the shady cool of violet. Amberwood ripple throughout, making this feel like a much-needed stroll through the woodlands when you need to escape. £160 for 75ml eau de parfum harrods.com
What do we mean by calling a scent solar? Although not an official fragrance family, it’s a word we’ve seen increasingly used to describe a whole range of recent launches.
Filled with sunshine, radiant and sparkling, we might once have called these fragrances ‘fresh-floral’ or, more prosaically, ‘citrus’. A new way of referencing scent taps into the zeitgeist, reflects how we’re feeling as a society and, therefore, how we want to project ourselves. In a world that for so long has seemed dark and scary, perhaps it’s only natural we’re being ever-more drawn to scents offering an olfactory ray of sunshine.
Actual solar flares are intense bursts of radiation emanating from the sun that can affect radio waves and send your Google Maps haywire. In a fragrance, yes ‘solar’ denotes a feeling of sunshine – but with it a physical feeling of being uplifted, of turning our faces toward the light source, a perfumed purr of warm cat contentedness.
Citrus notes are vital, but in this new genre they differ from Colognes because solar scents are more multi-layered: mellowed by breezy blossoms, dappled with cooler herbs or touched with a tingle of sheer spices and warm woods.
So, why is ‘solar’ trending? Quite simply, we need something that goes deeper than a quick, zesty pick-me-up; beyond merely feeling momentarily refreshed. As Louisa May Alcott puts it in Little Women, ‘Some people seemed to get all sunshine, and some all shadow.’ And quite frankly, with the state of the world at the moment, aren’t we all weary of shadows?
So, why not soak yourself in these solar scents, look towards the light, and let the sunshine in…?
Escentric Molecules M+ Mandarin£95 for 100ml eau de parfum
The KAPOW! of super-charged, fruity brightness feels like clouds parting and ends with a hug of ‘your skin but better’ softness. Sophisticated freshness that keeps on going (and helps you hang on to hope).
Floral Street Arizona Bloomfrom£24 for 10ml eau de parfum
Capturing the heart-soaring feeling of freedom this wide-open vista evokes a desert oasis. Queen of the Night flower lush with Balinese coconut, grounded by woody oakmoss and salted musks.
Maison Francis Kurkdjian Aqua Vitae Cologne Forte (2ml of all three new MFK eaux de parfum are in Eau So Fresh Discovery Box, £23 Sun-drenched mandarin mixes with a sunny floral accord and brings to mind the warmest, glowiest early afternoon light, underpinned by the sensuality of the fragrance.
Estée Lauder Bronze Goddess Azur £44 for 50ml eau de toilette
Sicilian lemon, Italian bergamot and Calabrian mandarin are shot through with salty licks of luminescence – neroli and orange flower buoyed by shafts of sunlight, warming to blissfully body-warmed milkiness.
Shay & Blue Mermaid Kisses (2ml eau de toilette is part ofThe Scented Retreat Discovery Box, £23)
Think honeydew melon, holiday cocktails on the shoreline at sunset, looking out to an endless horizon. We’re dreaming of bare, bronzed shoulders kissed by the evening air, the excitement of tomorrow’s adventures.
Travel restrictions are lifting for some, but we’re still up for taking a holiday in a bottle at Perfume Society Towers. One of the most magical things about fragrance is its ability to transport us to far-flung climes, to give the feeling of sun-warmed limbs and that blissful mix of relaxation and excitement at exploring somewhere new. So if you can’t get away, get these…!
CALVIN KLEIN Eternity Summer
Another in the ever-evolving ‘solar floral’ fragrance trend we’ve previously noted, here gleaming bright sunlight glints through the zing of Italian bergamot and luminescent jasmine, while heat haze shimmers in the desert rose oil and tingling warmth of ginger. Echoing the sunset colours of the beautiful bottle, this ‘duality of summer days’ captures the watercolour-dipped radiance melting into evening, cool violet leaves, coconut water and vetiver whispering on still sun-warmed skin. Immediately evocative. £RRP TBC STOCKIST TBC
DIOR La Collection Privé Eden-Roc
We rather suspect that Dior’s resident perfumer, François Demachy, enjoyed even more than usual his ‘research’ for this fragrance, a hymn to one of the world’s most legendary hotels, on the rocky shore of the Côte d’Azur. Flooded with sunlight, it’s cooled and ruffled by a salty breeze, revealing an accord reminiscent of nothing so much as expensive suntan oil, suffused with jasmine and a touch of coconut. Truly the stuff of holiday dreams. From £99 for 40ml eau de parfum dior.com
GUERLAIN Aqua Allegoria Nettare di Sole
There is just so much anticipation, each year, for Guerlain’s fresh-in-every-way duo of Aqua Allegoria, always sophisticated, always breezy, always wonderfully escapist. The star of the show as ever is a central note of citrusy bergamot, this time wrapped in luminous white florals and aquatic notes and then drizzled tantalisingly in honey. Guerlain’s own description nails it: ‘A delicious icy floral honey.’ To which we can only respond: ‘More, please.’ £69 for 75ml eau de toilette guerlain.com
ACQUA DI PARMA Bergamotto di Calabria La Spugnatura
This limited edition is offered in a real treasure of a collectible, hand-crafted porcelain bottle – refillable, too, in line with AdP’s focus on sustainability. Imagine a fresh breeze, lightly rippling through the air, sun sparkling on the water, imagined here via the citrus refreshment of bitter orange, mandarin and grapefruit alongside that signature bergamot, with green galbanum and geranium and offering lasting impression of cedarwood and vetiver. £124 for 100ml eau de toilette acquadiparma.com
HOLLISTER Canyon Escape For Him
Perfumer Linda Chinery took inspiration from ‘…the spirit of the Hollister guy who is energised by his love of the unknown and adventure that is made even better when shared with friends.’ Black pepper and cardamom provide a tingle of contradicting temperatures – imagine a heat wave relieved by jumping into a lake as blue as the juice. Soothing sage and a refreshingly piquant note of Californian juniper beckons the oakmoss, amber-rich base. Worth a detour! £16.50 for 100ml eau de toilette very.co.uk
I think I’m thoroughly sick of the phrase ‘staycation’ being bandied about, aren’t you?
Yes, yes, we’re all making do and mending while (hoping) the sun shines, but if you’re pining for a cancelled holiday and considering your local (likely overcrowded) beach with a jaded eye, I’m here to tell you that now is the time fragrance can lift your spirits, and I’ve chosen five favourite ‘holiday vibe’ perfumes to wear in warmer weather…
In the U.K. we’re been having what the newspapers refer to as ‘a scorcher’. This means three consecutive days when it didn’t rain, and the temperature goes from cardigan-wearing weather to blast-oven blistering in hours. While our interpretation of the word ‘hot’ may cause scorn, please understand: few places here have air-conditioning, and it’s the kind of humidity that makes you want to clamber naked into a supermarket freezer and have done with it. Also, a sudden hot spell can play havoc with one’s scent choices, and the way they perform.
When temperatures soar, what you might normally wear can behave in a strange way. Suddenly, phantom notes can waft forth from your fragrance, or people across the rooms might catch a drift as aroma molecules travel further in hotter weather. As physicscentral.com explain, ‘Just as the kinetic theory of gases would suggest, scents are susceptible to the whims of temperature, flying high in warmer climes and hunkering down when it gets cold.’
Whether you’re making the best of socially distant picnics in the park or cursing over those ‘easily inflatable’ paddling pools in the garden, here are five fragrances to transport you somewhere infinitely more exotic in a flash…
Van Cleef Arpels Neroli Amara
Lip-smackingly juicy from the get-go, radiating wave after wave of gloriously bitter orange in a transparent wash of instant gratification (that happily lasts many hours). £130 for 75ml eau de parfum selfridges.com
Escentric Molecules Escentric 05
A walk from the sea through a shady pine forest, personified. Green figs lap bergamot, salty freshness trailing through the delicious cool, camphoraceous quietude of cypress and resinous Cashmeran. £35 for 30ml eau de parfum From The Perfume Society shop
Molton Brown Flora Luminare
So crisply green the air around you seems to shiver, this luminescent white floral begins with bitter almond, then gently bathes orange blossom’s sunshine in tiaré absolute’s luscious, creamy embrace. £60 for 50ml eau de toilette moltonbrown.co.uk
Parterre The Hour of Dusk & Gold
Lean in to the balminess with this languid sunset of a scent. Verdant angelica root and a powdered glow of spiciness from wild Persian carrot seed sparkle like fire reflected in the crest of an iridescent wave. £160 for 100ml eau de parfum bloomperfume.co.uk
Elizabeth Arden White Tea Mandarin Blossom
Think sunlit skin, crisp sheets, a good book, the day’s first sip of tea – sheer bliss, but we’re in a Sicilian citrus grove (all the better). Energising, then soothing in its apricot and musky wood dry down: succumb. From £36 for 100ml eau de toilette elizabetharden.co.uk
At PSHQ we’re literally salivating over these pictures of the Bocelli family’s bathing establishment, because although we may not be able to wiggle our toes in the sand and gawp at the azure waters, this stunning collab allows us to travel in spirit via the radiant fragrances and vibrant colours of the new capsule collection.
In the utterly stunning location of Alpemare Beach Club, Forte dei Marmi in Tuscany (which looks like it should be the set of a Wes Anderson film, don’t you think?) for the first time ever, Acqua di Parma have dressed the beachfront for the entire Summer season! And now, you can dress your home to transport you to the Med every time you see those so-happy pops of colour or catch a waft of the glorious scents.
Comprising fabulously luxurious body products such as the Shower Mousse (£37 for 150ml), lightly scented with the lemon, myrtle, jasmine and salty marine breeze notes of Mirto di Panarea, a Body Scrub (£50 for 200ml) fragranced with their Fico di Amalfi grapefruit, bergamot, lemon and fig (which is basically like sexy marmalade), and even a range of Travel Accessories (we have our eyes on the Confetti Blue Beach Towel, £255 – would it be a bit extra to say we dream of spritzing this with one of the Blu Mediterraneo collection (from £49) and ‘travelling’ with our noses as we sit in our back gardens?) we’re spoiled for choice!
We say: if you can’t be there in person, let perfume whisk you there right now. So spritz that sunshine-filled fragrance and light that candle, because the beach will wait until you can get there again, but your mood can be lifted in mere seconds by the magic of summer scents…
Fresh laundry – crisp cotton sheets on a washing line – is often cited as one of our all-time favourite smells. But what exactly makes line-dried fabric smell so good, and which fragrances can equally evoke the immediate comfort we long for…?
‘We basically create the smell of people’s babies,’ one of the technical perfumers told me, ‘and if we even change the scent of their washing powder a little bit, we get so many complaints.’ They produced many thousands of possible options to fragrance people’s washing – from caramel (popular in Brazil, apparently) to chic multi-layered, musky perfumes. But the most popular of all (and one of the most technically challenging to re-create)? That freshly line-dried smell.
So what is it, beyond your choice of washing powder, that makes fabric smell particularly pleasing if it’s been dried on a line (preferably in a flower meadow, and hung while wearing an Edwardian broderie anglaise gown just prior to picking apples in the orchard, in my dreams, but we work with what we have.)
In a scientific paper examining the ‘Chemical analysis and origin of the smell of line-dried laundry‘, atmospheric chemists have published their analysis of ‘line-dried towels at the molecular level’, now they’ve discovered the exact source of this so-specific smell. Using cotton towels from IKEA, they washed them three times, then dried them in three differing ways: inside the office, on the balcony under a plastic shade and on the balcony in the sun.
Extraordinarily, they found that ‘Line-drying uniquely produced a number of aldehydes and ketones,’ Sylvia Pugliese – the leading researcher – told the New York Times – which are ‘…organic molecules our noses might recognise from plants and perfumes. For example, after sunbathing, the towels emitted pentanal, found in cardamom, octanal, which produces citrusy aromas, and nonanal, which smells rose-like.’
Fascinating stuff, and it got me wondering which fragrances we could reach for that could also recreate that feeling of sunlit cleanliness and comfort, bottled…
A whoosh of silvery, sun-dappled airiness shot through with ginger, mint, and leafy green notes, softening to powdery florals, cushioned by warm skin-like musk and vetiver. One to spray when you need to be reminded of lazy sundays and lie-ins and snuggling up in bliss.
CLEAN Reserve Warm Cotton [Reserve Blend]£82 for 100ml eau de parfum spacenk.com
Yearning for an eco-luxury house with a Swedish mountain lake view? (Uh yes, always.) Bright cotton and bracing air’s evoked with ambrette seeds, freesia, spring magnolia, and soft musk. You’ll be yodelling from first spritz.
Who doesn’t want to be wrapped in a whisper of white fluffy towels and powdery peonies? Effortless and uncomplicated, sooth cares away with delicate freesia nuzzling fuzzy peach, gauzy ylang ylang, sheer rose, wisps of incense and a cloud of creamy froth.
Mandarin swathed in powdered sandalwood shavings, violet suffused in a cool fig milk and tonka bean draped with the feeling of washing blowing in the breeze. Think muslin curtains framing a perfect view, the deliciously cool side of a pillow against a flushed cheek.
Van Cleef & Arpels Bois Blanc £130 for 75ml eau de parfum selfridges.com
Think: deliciously smooth, Egyptian cotton (high thread count, obvs) boutique hotel sheets, just-showered skin and roasted coffee beans sitting atop a warm snuggle of back-lit amber and the sexy hay-like muskiness of the base. For dirty weekends (but in clean sheets.)
So, next time you bury your nose in a freshly dried, fluffy towel, slip into deliciously clean sheets that were dried in the sunshine or spray yourself with a fabulously ‘clean’ smelling fragrance – consider if you can pick up these ultra-nuanced notes with your nose. The more deeply we analyse smells – especially those ‘everyday scents’ we think we know so well – the greater our understanding and the better our sense of smell ultimately becomes. It’s a washing-day win-win…
A full day of sunshine seems a rare treat so far this summer – as we write this, looking out of the office window, puddles of water reveal an earlier downpour and the sky doesn’t look particularly promising. Meh. Instead of being downbeat and shaking our fists in anger at the weather gods, we decided to spritz on some sunshine with a few of summer’s limited editions. Think of them as portable dreams of warmer days, and get your hands on them before they disappear altogether – like the sunshine itself!
Three gorgeous sugared-almond coloured bottles [see above] of Goutal’s prettiest and freshest summer scents are crying out to be shown off on dressing tables. The result of a collaboration with the artist Cecile Togni; Ceclie is inspired by Italy, music and her work with many luxury fashion houses.
Annick Goutal Eau du Sud, Eau d’Hadrien & Ninfeo Mio £87 for 100ml eau de toilette
Buy them at House of Fraser
The jungle green bottle of this utterly sharable scent gives the illusion of peering deep into lush palm-fringed undergrowth. Crisp notes of lime mojito, ginger and juicy guava clear the way for a vibrantly fresh green heart spiced with juniper, before everything cools off with coconut milk, cedar and tree moss.
The internationally acclaimed ‘Queen of colour’ (and now fragrance) Terry de Gunzburg captures refreshing notes of iced tea sipped on summer’s day by the sea. Buoyant lemon verbena lifts the spirits before herbal-powdery mate, black tea and a dreamily soft musk base soothe the soul.
Terry de Gunzburg Thé Glacé Eau Fraîche £107 for 100ml eau de parfum
Buy it at Selfridges
A hot pink outfit for the latest limited edition for Her, and the juice matches the bottle with its vibrant tropical fruitiness radiating juicy vibes and the energy of an exotic setting sun. We know we shouldn’t be influenced by flacons, but even seeing the colourful squares makes us feel warmer, somehow!
Paul Smith Sunshine for Her £31.00 for 100ml eau de toilette
Buy it at Boots
Evoking the fashion of tribal beauty and spirit of an ultra-glam safari holiday, this is the original Extatic gone wild. One for those who prefer their summers hot and spicy: ginger flower, pink pepper, tiger orchid, ylang ylang, night jasmine and cashmere wood will have you turning up the air-con…
Balmain Extatic Tiger Orchid £69.00 for 90ml eau de parfum
Exclusively in-store at Harrods
Britney’s favourite place to holiday is, apparently, Hawaii (we’d be happy to join her if she felt like extending an invite right now!) thus, inspired by white sandy beaches, the warmth of sun on skin and abandoning yourself to exoticism: notes of Bird of Paradise, passion fruit, and coconut. Delish!
BRITNEY SPEARS(tm) Maui fantasy £35 for 100ml eau de toilette
Buy it at Superdrug
The much-loved summer go-to fragrance has been refreshed even further with exquisitely juicy nectarine, peach, apricot and soft musk. We imagine wearing this to a tea-party, clinking glasses and laughing while wearing a gauzy gown and dancing barefoot in the grass until the sun begins to set….
Elizabeth Arden Green Tea Nectarine Blossom £30 for 100ml eau de toilette
Buy it at elizabetharden.co.uk
It’s kind of impossible not to feel cheerful when spraying on a mist of this feminine, mouth-wateringly fruity fragrance inspired by the exotic freshness of dragon fruit (one for Game of Thrones fans on their hols?) The chaps are in for a treat, too – the male version celebrating the unique freshness of kiwi.
L’Eau d’Issey Summer 100ml for £41.00 eau de toilette
Beachy happiness in a bottle with a fizz of bergamot, gentle dune rose, creamy sandalwood infused with rich cocoa absolute and a healthy splash of refreshing coconut water. Solar musks give an aldehydic lift to the lingering in the base – treat yourself to an ice cream in anticipation…
Philosophy Pure Summer Grace £33 for 50ml eau de toilette
Buy it at John Lewis
A debut scent from the award-winning actress, it celebrates her favourite time of shadows slipping into sunlight as the sun dips low on a dusky shore. Ripe nectarine, pink pepper and coconut fuse with salty sea spray as jasmine, peony and orange blossom blush sweetly into a sublimely white musky base.
‘Sunshine and showers’ seems to be the phrase most often escaping the lips of weather-forecasters of late – yes it may be fully Spring time in the UK, but sunshine is most definitely not guaranteed. Thank goodness, then, for the consistently stylish scented offerings from Cire Trudon (who know a thing or two about candle-making, having been at it since 1643) – the latest being ‘Cyrnos‘ (which translates to ‘Corsica’ in Ancient Greek), presented in the most sunshine-y yellow glass holder we think we’ve ever seen, it truly seems to glow before it’s even been shown a flame. From the vibrant colour, you may imagine it to be a highly citrus-fragranced affair, but read on, for all is not quite what it seems…
Cire Trudon say: ‘Between 1850 and 1914, the French Riviera was the place to be for the intellectual and political elite. Ruling families, intellectuals, aristocrats and artists travelled there there to enjoy the practically guaranteed sunshine during there during the winter.
Empress Eugenie, Napoleon the 3rd’s widow, fell for this small corner of paradise. In 1894, she built a villa – named Cyrnos – in Cap Martin, located near Monaco. The name was a tribute to the Bonapartes’ homeland, her late husband’s family. Drenched in sun, and overlooking the Mediterranean Sea, the villa is set in an idyllic stage. The limestone rock made the garden’s construction particularly difficult, only achieved through strong will, and lots of dynamite. The Empress’s ambition was to create a park that looked as though it had always been around. Cyrnos, Cire Trudon’s latest creation conjures the solar beauty, the dazzling scent, and the art of living in this truly unique place.’
With her penchant for landscapes harbouring contrasting plants and their multitudionous scents, the Empress finally achieved this vision: mature pine, olive, and palm trees fringed by wide-ranging flowerbeds full of colour amid the arid landscape typical of the region. The smell of cystus, myrtle, mastic, and rosemary fill the air, mixing with the lavender blooms carried from the garden. Though she lived mostly alone, the Empress hosted any number of prominent monarchs at the time, such as Queen Victoria, as well as avant-garde intellectuals types like Jean Cocteau.
Gorgeously vibrant and uplifting, the sunshine is captured in Cyrnos not through the obvious choice of citrus, but with sun-warmed herbaceous wafts of loveliness that follow you around the house all day, and have us wishing for a personal invite to that all too tempting-sounding villa itself…!
Cire Trudon Cyrnos candle £70
Buy it at John Lewis
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